How To Fill Your Sales Pipeline In 30 Days

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1 How To Fill Your Sales Pipeline In 30 Days

2 contents Fight data decay Content Nurture DAYS 5 days 2 days 10 days 1 7 days 30 DAYS 2 Get to the right people Adding value

3 Introduction It happens four times a year. The quarter-end is approaching and the race to fill your Sales pipeline is on. You need to be equipped with the right content, tools and, ultimately, prospects to generate high-quality leads and approach them knowing exactly what makes them tick to get converting fast. This ebook is packed with practical and highly actionable steps to help you grow your Sales pipeline. With the commitment and creativity of your team, you will expand your pipeline before year-end - even if you only have 30 days left to do it. It s not too late to make a difference! Tom McMullen, Subscription Sales Director ALF Business Development 3

4 analyse Spring clean your contacts: add zest with fresh leads! How s your contact database? Fresh, or staler than last week s sandwiches? Urgently analyse what you ve got and rebuild what s missing. 4

5 Fight Data Decay If you haven t cleaned your CRM, it might be next to useless. B2B contact databases decay at a rate of 2 percent per month. Sounds tiny, right? But this trickle effect can really damage a healthy database after just a year! This decay is happening in your CRM, right this minute. Here s a scary example: Target Marketing surveyed 1,025 businesses to find out how many of their B2B contact records had changed over a year. A huge 71 percent of contact cards had altered in some way. Gartner estimated that businesses were losing $8 million annually because of this problem. Now s the time to spring clean and do it fast. Get your Customer Relationship Management (CRM) system primed and ready for action by removing stale data and breathing new life into it. B2B contact databases decay at a rate of 2% per month. 5

6 Get to the right people Once you have decided your target segment we would recommend no more than 5 invest in building out your core database. Identify your tier 1 and tier 2 top 200 lists and start making those connections. You have four potential routes here: Research: determine your tier 1 and tier 2 top 200 lists Database: invest in a reliable company information database. Go for one that aggregates from several sources or which is updated on a regular basis to make sure your data doesn t go stale again List purchase: buy a cleansed, de-duplicated and verified list from a broker List exchange: ask another business in a complementary niche to lend their list Invest in a database that gives you a 360-degree view of the prospect and company profile for more of a strategic sell. Your sales team wants to identify opportunities to pitch the product and know their audience inside out in order to approach confident and informed. NOW, YOU VE GOT YOUR TOP PROSPECTS MAKE SURE YOU RE GOOD TO THEM. 6

7 content is king Informative, interesting, new content will get the attention of your prospects. It links every other part of your marketing efforts, and it s the very core of any campaign. Quality is worth investing in: the aim here is to convert and convince. 7

8 Middle of the Funnel (MOFU) Techniques MOFU techniques, such as creating and distributing informative content, will support you in your campaign to nurture those leads. Winning content will: Offer something new to the target audience Be memorable for the reader as a unique and compelling piece Be easily shareable Understand its audience Be based on research and position your brand as a thought leader Be monitored and measured regularly to understand how people are consuming it Use richer content that offers value to the recipient to get that response, which will encourage them down the funnel. 8

9 It s all about the timing Seasonal events provide golden opportunities for focused marketing activities and quick-blitz campaigns. Timing will inevitably play a part in your choice of holiday, but some are easier to capitalise on than others. Pick a cheery event that gives you lots of themes to play with. Let s look at some pros and cons of seasonal marketing for the most common holidays: EVENT BENEFITS CHALLENGES New Year Valentine s Day Summer Back to School Black Friday Christmas New beginnings and new starts: lots of potential for themed content and infographics, particularly in health, fitness, fashion and diet sectors Love is a universal concept that can be woven into a content marketing strategy for practically any brand on the planet Better weather and longer days open doors for marketers selling everything from sneakers to plane tickets The end of the school holidays and summer provide a lot of opportunities for fresh start content. This US event has become a global buzzphrase as retailers slash their prices ahead of Christmas Perhaps the biggest holiday in the world, it transcends some religious boundaries and has recognisable and dependable themes. This event is primed for fun and interactivity and presents huge potential The party (and hangover) season isn t the most productive month to launch a marketing drive You ll need a sharp, sassy team to bring out the best in this well-worn, slightly dog-eared occasion Find a niche to get noticed, or your message will get lost in avalanche of smiling people in sun hats Schools and education is a niche not every brand will slot comfortably into Traction may be limited outside the US Everyone else is working on a rival campaign has your audience tuned out already? You ll really have to raise the stakes to get this one right: are you up for a challenge? 9

10 adding value Bottom of the funnel (BOFU) techniques help push those final prospects into your database. 10

11 BOFU content is the final, crucial piece to transform leads into customers. Offer something that s worth it To get more organic leads into your CRM, make them really want to sign up. Offer a compelling incentive and make the form as hassle-free as possible. Use strong call-to-actions and short sign-up forms to get them to hand over their details, and give them a great reward. Your newsletter may sound exciting to you, but fast list building may require something more creative. Add value by offering: Free assessments, demonstrations or evaluations Co-promotion: partner up with another organisation Extra licences or upgrades Workshops 11

12 accelerate and nurture the best leads It s time to focus on converting those leads. When times is of the essence, it makes sense to focus on driving the warmest leads those have interacted with your content down the funnel. Nurtured leads spend more and are more likely to make a purchase. It really is that simple. 12

13 Nurturing 101 If you haven t cleaned your CRM, it might be next to useless. According to research, nurtured leads: Make purchases that are 47 percent larger Produce 20 percent more sales opportunities Are more likely to engage with marketing messages So don t hang around. Identify the hottest leads in the pot. 1. Rapidly pursue those leads 2. Find out what makes them tick 3. Offer relevant content 4. Reach out with a tailored sales pitch 5. Smash your first week targets (trust us, it will happen!) 6. Move on to the next tier 7. Build conversations and stay engaged 8. Dance a joyful jig as one after the other converts % of sales go to the vendor that responds frst. The key is to understand each lead s situation and know their challenges and triggers. Make sure you feed all information into a proper CRM or Marketing Automation tool to track behaviour.

14 compete Hold a marketing & sales 48-hour marathon Now you have an abundance of warm leads ready to convert, it s time to knuckle down and hold a marketing marathon. A 48-hour stint will push the team to convert and follow up on the leads you ve nurtured already. 14

15 Setting Targets Make sure your Sales team are completely bought into the concept. Defined goals are the key to success in a marketing marathon. Whether it s closing 10 deals, upselling to 5 customers or even generating 20 opportunities, its easier to meet goals when they are clear. If you define the aims of the exercise before you start, you have a better chance of focusing everyone and getting that sense of urgency across to meet your sales goals before the year, or quarter, is out. DEFINED GOALS ARE THE KEY TO SUCCESS IN A MARKETING MARATHON 15

16 Focus Switch off all the smartphones, order large quantities of pizza and focus everyone in the room on the task at hand. To really push, you ll need to create a competitive atmosphere. See which teams can generate and follow up the most leads, and get the adrenaline pumping. Keep your teams motivated and start seeing the deals close. Keep your teams motivated and start seeing the deals close. 16

17 Top 5 Tools to help fill your Sales Pipeline Click on the links to find out more. 1 ALF 4 2 Access to Marketing Intelligence and a full contact database of Decision- Makers at major UK brands. Lead Forensics Know everything about every lead on your website. 5 Buzzsomo Find the most shared content and key influencers. Unbounce To A/B test for effective landing pages for your content. 3 Marketo For Marketing Automation and lead management. 17

18 happy hunting! To access over 40,000 Marketing and Sales Decision-Makers in the UK across 33 different categories, including Retail, Travel, and Finance, contact ALF Call

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